Sometimes, despite the all the stats, things go wrong in franchising. It might be a franchisee not making it and, occasionally, it’s the franchisor who suffers.
Why is this?
I was reading an article (on a ‘plane, interestingly) that modern airliners don’t fail… they only crash because of pilot error and franchising is the same.
As long as the system is well tested, the business model is robust and achievable and things are written down for franchisees to follow then there should be very few reasons for anyone to go bust, particularly now the economy is picking up.
But they do and the only reason possible is pilot error.
We see it fairly regularly… ‘it’s not working for me, the business model is wrong and marketing doesn’t work!’
‘What marketing are you doing?’
‘Errrr… I’ve got an advert booked.’
‘Really, and has it come out yet?’
What else are doing from the 8 marketing activities we said you really should be doing?’
‘Well, I’ve been busy!’
‘What with, ‘cos you ain’t got any customers.’
‘I’ve been decorating the office!’
Sometimes it’s the franchisor who does things wrong. Not investing enough into the franchise, not realising they are now a franchisor rather than being what they were before or trying to take too much from the business.
However, it seems to me, that when a franchise is fundamentally sound, it transcends all these examples of pilot error. For every franchisee who is not following the system, there are others who are and reaping the rewards.
I met a couple of guys last week who were on a course of ours way back – probably 8 years ago. After they completed their term with the franchisor they decided they no longer the support and left the network.
But the systems and processes they learned, together with the marketing techniques and management practices have stood them in good stead. They actually sold their franchise to someone who took their place as a franchisee.
They then set up a new business in a new sector based on the principles they’d learned from the franchisor.
Their business has flown and they are now becoming a franchisor… with a plan to sell their network in four years.
And, I believe, when they leave the franchise will continue to flourish because it will be set up to transcend them as individuals.
As long as the new pilot doesn’t make an error, that is!